Sunday, February 19, 2006

Engagement Across the Pond

It's common knowledge that far too many Americans don't understand what it's like to live in a world with occupying troops and threats of war on the horizon. What we know about every day life in Iraq, Iran and the Middle East comes from the self-censoring mainstream media. To say the least, much of the information shared with us is sketchy and skewed.

To combat this problem, I've been visiting blogs written by those who live these realities every day. It's an eye-opening experience and reminds me that people of differing cultures, religions and geographic locations hold much in common.

If you'd like to see the world through the eyes of the Arab and/or Muslim world, below I will list several blogs for your perusal. Read what they have to say and leave comments. Let's try to bridge the government-created chasm between people and countries, one blogger at a time.

Baghdad Dweller
The Black Iris of Jordan
Blogging the Middle East
Sabbah's Blog
Raising Yousuf
Healing Iraq
Iran's View from Outside


  1. Those look like interesting links. I'll have to check them out. I try to read foreign news sources periodically -- Al Jazeera, BBC, Canadian newspapers. Even if they don't disagree with the American viewpoint, the perspective is just different. The world does NOT revolve around the United States, and Americans need to be reminded of this.

  2. As long as you don't live under these cirumstances, one cannot imagine how it feels like. I've read an article of a respectable man who stayed in Treblinka during WWII. He refused to describe his memories by stating that only those who were there, know how it really felt. So if they already know, why repeat it?
    He had a good point, it really convinced me. He stated that while enlarging the fact that we should never forget, he also mentioned that personal pain and suffering cannot be eased by one's compassion.

    Now to get back to the discussion: it's good to have different opinions, but I remain sceptical when it comes to internet based knowledge. Although personal opinions are useful to create a certain atmosphere or merely to speak out, they're still subjective. And that's where the danger lies. But on the other hand, aren't we all subjective to our own emotions?
    Difference in opinions is a good thing, it's what makes us think, as long as we can make up our own opinion, coloured with both parties.

    I hope my English is readable, if not, please correct me :)

  3. "As long as you don't live under these cirumstances, one cannot imagine how it feels like.

    Point taken, yet one can still empathize with another's situation.

    Everything we experience in this life is subjective.

  4. Dear Rambling Taoist,

    You are absolutely right, what we get from the news is a fraction of the reality. However, this applies not only to the US, but to the rest of this globe. In my country, Saudi Arabia, people are also unaware of the world around them and are constantly subjected to the government's lies and propaganda. But this is a new age, an age where all of us have something to say, and through the blogsphere, we can skip the middle man!

    All the best,


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